Several hay fires have already occurred this year, and growers should be aware of the potential for additional ones. When hay is baled too wet, hay or barn fires can occur.
However, hay fires can generally be prevented if hay is baled at appropriate moisture and the temperature of recently baled hay monitored.
Hay usually will go through a heating phase within one to two weeks after baling. During this time, hay should be monitored to ensure it does not reach temperatures that can damage the hay or lead to spontaneous combustion (fire).